Growing up, I never felt like a part of the “in” crowd. In high school, I associated with some of the “popular” kids, but I never quite fit into a group. I didn’t do what most “normal” kids did. I think a huge part of it was my location and circumstance.
Normal- Conforming to the standard or the common type. Usual, regular, natural.
As I look back over my life, I can see how God, strategically, placed me. For those of you who don’t know, I grew up in a small town (population less than 300 according to Wikepedia), with no red light, and more than 1 mile down a dirt road. I never really got to hang out, I never snuck out (where would I go), I didn’t have a car, I never had a bf, I’d never been to prom (or a dance), and the list goes on.
When I finally went off to college, I began to really lose my identity. Not that I knew who I was before, but if I had any semblance of myself, it was completely obliterated in college. I would try and make myself do what the “normal” college kids did. Or I would try and hang around whoever would accept me. The more I did, the more I got lost. I wasn’t happy, and I felt it was because I wasn’t like everybody else. Here’s the thing… Even in the midst of me being lost, I knew I was different”.
So, let’s fast forward to now. There are some things that God convicts me about that many may not understand. At times, I don’t understand. And sometimes, you may begin to believe those convictions are bogus, especially when everyone else seems to be doing the very thing you feel convicted of. Lately, I have even been distanced from certain situations and people. I honestly felt some type of way, but it made me realize a lot about what God is doing.
After some much-needed reflection, I realize that God has set me apart. Not only in the literal sense, but the spiritual. My life circumstances have put me in positions to recognize some things about who he has called me to be. As a matter of fact, if you are his child, he calls you to be set apart. There are going to be times where you can’t do what others are doing, even in the body of Christ. Here are some reasons why…
- You are made in his Image- When you are chosen, you don’t belong to this world. To say you can be in both worlds is an oxymoron and lukewarm in nature. How can you be made in God’s image and look like the world? Here’s the answer, you can’t! God, repeatedly, tells us who he is and not one time does he say he looks anything like the world. When you are chosen, you are a part of God’s family and you have purpose. Just as Christ came to Earth to serve and help build the kingdom, so should you. How can you, who live in a physical world, build for something eternal when you’re not operating by God’s eternal spirit?
- God wants to do something supernatural in your life- Earlier, we defined normal. One definition of normal was “natural”. We are so busy trying to fit in with everyone else, that we can’t see that God is trying to get us beyond a normal mindset. God has given you vision for the supernatural, but you’re steady trying to see through the narrow lens of the world. When you take that lens off, you will be able to see the things that God wants you to see…and what he wants you to see is so great, that a normal mind can’t even fathom it.
- God wants us to depend on him- Earlier, I talked about how I just wanted to be like everyone else. I wanted to fit in. Here’s the thing, when we depend on others too much, the focus is off God. We begin to find our validation through others. God will often begin to separate you from these people. Sometimes you may not be able to figure out why…but when I tell you, the thing that God is trying to do in your life is SO great, that you are going to HAVE to find your validation through him. Normal minds won’t be able to understand it or even believe it.
- God wants to elevate you- When everyone is the same, there is no difference. This sounds obvious, right? Well think about it, how can you be elevated when you’re stuck on the same level as everyone else? God is calling you to something that everyone else can’t do. You may say, I want to work a 9-5, then go home, watch tv, say a 2-minute prayer and then and go to bed… like everyone else. Billy Graham, Myles Munroe, Bill Gates, Oprah Winfrey, Nikola Tesla, Thomas Edison…all these people had something in common. They didn’t settle for normal. They didn’t do what everyone else did and because of this, they have impacted the world. Now imagine being set apart for God’s purpose. There is no place you can’t go and no thing you can’t do. All things are possible with God and he wants you to share in his glory.
So, what I want you to get from all of this is that you were made to be different. God wants you to be rid of that natural mindset and embrace who he has called you to be. You must remember that God knew you before you were born, and he even watched you form in your mother’s womb. Do you think he made you that special just so you could be like everyone else? I think not. So today, embrace who you are and the things that God has asked you to do. Work hard and seek him and watch how he will work through you!